It’s quite a task to choose the top one’s out of 87 ghats along the Ganges in Varanasi; but obviously one can’t possibly visit all of them on their trip there. Varanasi is most famous for these beautiful ghats which are primarily used for bathing and puja rituals. Most of them were constructed when Varanasi was rebuilt under the Maratha Empire in the 1700s. They are either privately owned or have special significance in Hindu mythology. You could take a boat ride from Assi Ghat to Raj Ghat in the evening, when the ghats look incredibly beautiful owing to being lit by diyas during aarti. However, if you have to choose, here are the top five:Also Read - Uttar Pradesh Lockdown: Govt Revises Guidelines, Allows 100 People In Weddings, Other Gatherings | Guidelines Here
Assi Ghat Also Read - Dengue, Viral Fever Outbreak Wreaks Havoc Across India, Nearly 300 Patients Hospitalised in UP's Kanpur | Key Points
This is where the Ganges river meets river Assi. Located at the extreme southern end of the city, it is an important ghat. The pilgrims take a dip in the water here before worshiping Lord Shiva, in the form of a lingam under a nearby pipal tree. The ghat is home to some of the most buzzing cafes and eateries. Also Read - UP Rains: 24 Dead in 3 Days as Walls, Houses Collapse Due to Heavy Rain in Uttar Pradesh
Manikarnika (also known as the burning ghat) is where the majority of cremation takes place in Varanasi. Hindus believe that being cremated here will liberate them from the cycle of death and rebirth. Piles of firewood line the bylanes leading upto it; and the fire perpetually burns at the ghat. The only other ghat where bodies are cremated in Varanasi is Harishchandra Ghat.
Dashashwamedh Ghat is at the heart of all the action in Varanasi. It is one of the oldest and holiest; most famous for its Ganga Aarti which takes place every evening. It is located close to the revered Vishwanath Temple. Legend goes that, Lord Brahma created the ghat to welcome Lord Shiva on earth.
Darbhanga Ghat is a photographer’s delight. It is one of the most visually appealing, and architecturally impressive ghats in Varanasi. It features the imposing Darbhanga Palace – part of which has been turned into a hotel. It is said to have been built in the early 1900s by the royal family of Bihar. Another gorgeous ghat right next to it is the Munshi Ghat, that too is worth a visit.
Man Mandir Ghat
If you want to see some exquisite Rajput architecture, a visit to Man Mandir Ghat is a must. The palace here was built by the Rajput Maharajah Man Singh of Jaipur in the 17th century. An observatory was built here later in the 1730s by Sawai Jai Singh II. It’s open to the public; the astronomical instruments in good condition. You can also head to its spacious terrace for a fabulous view of the ghat and the river Ganga.